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Hearing Aid Technology and Costs

Let’s talk a little bit about hearing aid technologies, and how they vary. Why does the cost of hearing aids vary so much? Why is it so difficult to do research and do homework, in terms of what’s the best hearing aid for me?  What should I pay for a hearing device?

There are six major brands of hearing aids in the world. Every year or two, each of these six brands comes out with their latest, greatest technology. They advertise it as their premium level hearing technology, and they market their new features to try to compete against their five competitors. We’ll call this their premium level hearing device.

And then in very short time, they release cheaper versions of it.  They spend all this money and all this time with their auditory engineers making a great hearing device, and then they literally take features away and market it as a cheaper version of itself.

The ONLY reason you wouldn’t want the premium technology? Money. Price is the only reason you wouldn’t want this technology because any other option is really a takeaway. Almost all the brands do it.  They usually create four different levels of technology. For example, they make their premium level hearing aid, and then take away some features and produce what we call an advanced level technology.  Then they take some more features away for what we call a mid-level technology. Then even more for entry level technology.

What you’re paying for is features, up and down the road. You could argue anything less than the premium level hearing aid that they produced is a de-feature version of the best.  One manufacturer for example, calls it their 90 series, their 70 series, their 50 series, and their 30 series. Keep in mind, these were all based on that 90 series product.

When we talk with patients, we really encourage high end technology.  We think it works so much better, and we’re just not such big fans of taking away. I think if you’re if you’re paying less money then you are paying for less technology or you’re paying for less service, which is probably the most important thing with hearing technology. The expertise of the provider fitting your hearing aids and making sure they’re following best practices makes a big difference. Sometimes when you can get cheaper hearing aids, you take that whole component out, and then it really doesn’t matter how great the hearing aid technology is, because if they’re not fit properly with best practices and the required measurements, then they are just not going to work well with your hearing loss at all.

1 thought on “Hearing Aid Technology and Costs”

  1. My dad is in need of a hearing aid since we always have to yell or repeat ourselves so he can hear. I like how you mentioned paying for high-end technology when it comes to hearing aids to get the best outcome. We’ll have to get him fitted for different styles of hearing aids to see what feels good for him.

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